Derrida, Jacques

Of Grammatology. 1967. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997.

The science of writing should therefore look for its object at the roots of scientificity. The history of writing should turn back toward the origin of historicity. A science of the possibility of science? A science of science which would no longer have the form of logic but that of grammatics? A history of the possibility of history which would no longer be an archaeology, a philosophy of history or a history of philosophy? {Derrida 1997: 27–28}

Hayles, N.K.

How We Became Posthuman: Virtual bodies in cybernetics, literature, and informatics. Chicago, Ill. University of Chicago Press, 1999.
How We Think: Digital media and contemporary technogenesis. Chicago, London: The University of Chicago Press, 2012.

The open secret about humanities print publications is their extremely low subscription rates and, beyond this, the shockingly small rate at which articles are cited (and presumably read). David P. Hamilton (1990, 1991) undertook a study of how often journal articles are cited within five years of their publication. Correcting for announcements, reviews, etc., that are not intended for citation (see Pendlebury 1991), his results show that for the sciences, the percentage of articles that have never been cited once in five years is 22.4 percent. For the humanities, it is a whopping 93.1 percent. Even acknowledging the different roles that article publication plays in the sciences (where it is the norm) and the humanities (where the book is the norm) and the different rates at which journal publication takes place in the two fields (a few months in the sciences, from one to three years in the humanities), this figure should give us pause. {Hayles 2012: 3}

Man, Paul de

Allegories of Reading: Figural language in Rousseau, Nietzsche, Rilke, and Proust. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1979. Print.

Taken literally, Rousseau’s assertion that he does not know whether he or his fictional characters wrote the letters that make up Julie makes little sense. The situation changes when we realize that R. is merely the metaphor for a textual property (readability). Further inferences then become apparent, for example that R. is similar to N. in his inability to read Julie and that it is impossible to distinguish between reader and author in terms of epistemological certainty. It follows that we can reverse the priority which makes us think of reading as the natural consequence of writing. It now appears that writing can just as well be considered the linguistic correlative of the inability to read. We write in order to forget our foreknowledge of the total opacity of words and things or, perhaps worse, because we do not know whether things have or do not have to be understood. {Man 1979: 203}

McGann, Jerome

A New Republic of Letters: Memory and scholarship in the age of digital reproduction. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2014.

Perhaps the most significant advance beyond copy-text editing came in 2001 when we began to design and develop Juxta, a computerized tool for a flexible, decentered approach to the collation of multiple witnesses. The documentary orientation of The Rossetti Archive had such a tool in its theoretical purview from the outset, but in 1992-1993 we lacked the resources for implementing it. When the resources became available in 2001 the tool went into development, and it is currently available as both a downloadable application and a web resource.

The great advance Juxta brings to traditional collation procedures emerges from its ability to set any of the witnesses as the comparison base. Juxta can then generate multiple visualizations of the different perspectives on the textual field that emerge from the different base texts. Juxta demonstrates the limitations that a traditional stemmatic analysis brings to the study of textual fields, exposing as it does only a certain set of field relations; a genetic set from a hypothesized or known point of origin. That perspective obscures both the presence and the importance of other possible ways for mapping those relations. Every witness in the textual field, even a corrupt witness, supplies its own explanation of the field and the meaning of the other witnesses. Exposing those different and overlapping comparison sets is crucial for the student who wants to understand the interdependent and social character of textual fields. {McGann 2014: 123}

Like The Rossetti Archive, The Blake Archive is without question the most comprehensive and authoritative edition of Blake ever created, as well as the most globally accessible. Paradoxically, it is not the edition that scholars commonly work from or cite. It thus illustrates that innovative online scholarship emerged, and for the most part still remains, peripheral to the regular research and publication of the vast majority of working scholars. {McGann 2014: 139}